By: Cindy Joseph
Many women of all ages want to be seen, noticed, flirted with and valued. There’s no age limit to those desires—I feel them and so do many of the women I know.
But lots of women believe that we can’t have that kind of attention later in life because of the societal messages we’ve received since birth: As we age we lose value. Only youth is attractive—especially if you’re female.
For so many of us, as soon as we spot the first gray hair or fine line, we start the futile battle against time.
It is a battle nobody can win—none of us can stop time or the changes that go with it.
Life is but a continuous series of changes and transformations. We can spend a lot of energy and money trying to look younger than we are.
The question I ask is, “How successful it that process and could it be robbing us of pleasure and joy?”
Just think of the precious time we can spend feeling badly about ourselves—for the simple natural process of aging. What would happen if we embraced our aging to the point of celebrating it?
We are aging from the moment we are born, so aging is really another word for living!
Truthfully, all of the anti-age societal messages are made up. And we all do have the ability to unlearn them and make up something new and more positive, like pro-age!
It’s all a process, and through experimentation, I’ve found a lot of great ways to feel more joyful, take more pleasure in myself as I get older, and free myself from all those negative messages.
Here are a few great ways I’ve found that have helped me infuse every moment with confidence and vibrancy.
Question any assumptions that make you feel bad about yourself.
We often take negative concepts of aging for granted—we’ve heard these messages so much that they become normalized, and we just think they’re “true.”
But negative concepts of aging are man-made i.e. invented by us. So we can change those beliefs. We only make them true by believing them.
When you change your mind and practice living according to different points of view, you change what’s true. You don’t have to start out already believing all these positive concepts of aging; it’s a journey to unlearn what society has taught us and to choose a new way of thinking for ourselves.
What’s important is to take the first steps on that journey—try it out by questioning any concepts that make you feel bad about yourself or dim your pleasure.
Learn about other cultures’ attitudes toward beauty.
Our culture is just one of thousands all over the world—and many of them have very different ideas about beauty and value in relation to age.
All societies have adorned their bodies in one form or another; it’s a natural behavior of our species, whether it takes the form of make-up, tattoos, piercings, scarring, jewelry, apparel, or wrapping, cutting, dying, twisting your hair.
But not all cultures use adornment to hide things or to try to slow the natural cycles of life.
Many of cultures throughout history have used adornment for ritual, celebration or to accentuate the features one already has.
Take the first step.
Being realistic is one way I have come to feel confident with my age. You can only add to who and what you are. You have more experience, knowledge, self-understanding.
Your taste becomes more attuned to who you are. You also know your body better than ever as you age. That can enhance your sensuality by far.
It might feel like a leap—since we have been inundated with advertising that tells us if we allow our age to show we will become invisible and undervalued.
When I went out on a limb and took the risk of wearing my age openly and proudly, I was astounded at what happened. When we find ourselves perfect, exactly as we are, it changes our persona.
That changes how others perceive and react to us. If you take that first step, as you learn to love your age and the new features that go along with it you may find the world around you start to respond to and reinforce that confidence.
Experiment with your makeup routine.
I’ve found that matte, dry and powder-based cosmetics dull my skin’s healthy glow and radiance. It feels like a mask or barrier between me and the world.
Try experimenting with what happens when you reveal your skin and let it radiate, by using cosmetics that allow your natural features to show, and nourish your skin rather than hide or cover it up.
At BOOM, we are collecting a community of empowered women who support each other in sharing our vulnerabilities, live lives free of societal dictates and live with self-confidence.
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